By Bill Anderson
Winter arrives on Friday, December 21, but the December Thaw has loosened Winter’s icy grasp for the past week and a half, pushing daytime highs into the mid-40’s while clearing streets of ice and snow. The mild temperatures have allowed harvest activities to move at a rapid pace, and some local producers, including the Pherson Farm which harvests its own crops as well as doing custom harvest work for others, finished up the corn harvest at the first of the week. Due to the drawn-out pace of the harvest this year the transportation system has been able to keep up, and, even though the 2018 corn and soybean crops have been among the largest in history, there has been no need to pile corn or beans in giant, golden mountains on the ground as in the past several harvests. With the 2018 crop records now in the history books, preparations for 2019 have already begun. There is some conjecture that buckwheat and spelts may make a comeback, but seed orders for those crops are light, so far.
The members of Rutland’s Bergman-Evenson Post #215 of The American Legion met at 3:00 p.m. on Wednesday, December 12, in the dining room of the Lariat Bar. The Adjutant’s report showed $3,868.00 available for the Post’s activities in the community. Members decided to make a $250.00 contribution to the Sargent Central students raising money to participate in the International Ambassadors of Music tour of Europe in the Summer of 2019. The members also discussed the Super Bowl Sunday breakfast/brunch on February 3, 2019, and decided to serve eggs, biscuits & gravy for the event. The Legion Auxiliary is also expected to have a sale of baked goods that same morning. Raffle tickets were distributed for a raffle in which an 8: power ice auger will be the prize. The price of the tickets is $1.00 apiece or 6 for $5.00. The drawing will be held on Sunday, February 3, in the Rutland Town Hall. The next meeting of Bergman-Evenson Post #215 will be during the month of January, at the call of the Commander. Officers of the Post are: Commander, Larry Christensen; Vice-Commander, Tom Manley; Adjutant, Doug Olstad; Chaplain, Ted Lee; and, Sergeant At Arms, Calvin Jacobson.
True to his word, Santa Claus stopped in at the Rutland Town Hall late in the afternoon of Saturday, December 15, to take part in the community’s 73rd annual Santa Claus Day event. Activities began at 5:00 p.m. with BINGO and games for the kids, then got exciting when sleigh bells announced the arrival of Santa Claus, himself, at the front door of the Town Hall. Despite tough sledding caused by the 45-degree temperature that turned the snow to mush and the ice to slush, Santa and his reindeer had braved a landing on bare pavement to visit old and young friends here. Santa Claus Day proceeded with games and crafts for kids; BINGO games with cash prizes for each game; and, a soup & sandwich supper prepared by Bert Siemieniewski and served by the Rutland Community Club. BINGO winners were: Lyle Erickson; Mike Lock; Beverly Kulzer; Bert Siemieniewski; Bill Anderson; Rick Banish; Doug Spieker; Dianna Anderson- twice; Jeff Olson; Tony Banish; Cecelia Olson; Doris Hoistad; Janet Kiefer; Jesse Brakke; Lenny Heinen – twice; Diane Smith; Phyllis Erickson; Yvonne Johnson; and, Jim Peterson – Blackout. Winners received $5.00, except the Blackout winner who won a prize of $20.00. Those in attendance also signed up for a drawing for Christmas hams donated by local businesses and individuals. While other events proceeded, Santa listened to Christmas requests and posed for photos with children and adult admirers, alike. Santa’s elf assistant made sure that each child received a bag filled with candy and other small gifts prepared by the Rutland Community Club for the event. After the last BINGO game was played, the drawing for Santa Claus Day Christmas hams donated by local businesses and individual benefactors was held. Christmas ham winners were: Kyler Pherson;Andrea Erickson; Joe Wisnewski; Lydia Anderson; Zack Bergh; Tony Banish; Corbin Carlson; Mason Breker; Terri Erickson ; Ted Lee; Jameson Cory; Pam Maloney; Delores Lysne; Kegan Dockter; Doug Spieker; Cora McKinney; Henry Pavek; Launa Peterson; Wendy Jacobson; Joanne Harris; Janet Kiefer; Lincoln Brown; Eli Olson; Landon Jenson; Bertha Siemieniewski; Delores Breker; Samantha Splonkoski; Carolyn Christensen; Bee Banish; Renee Cramton; Karla Breker; Andrew Woytassek; Phyllis Erickson; Doris Hoistad; Bill Anderson; Bonnie Anderson; Koyle Stiegelmen; Miles Anderson; Patty Woytassek; Joel Susag; Nathan Bergh; Kathy Wyum; Aden Kohler; Cohen Jenson; and, Beverly Kulzer. The following Rutland businesses and individuals contributed the Christmas hams to Rutland’s 73rd Santa Claus Day: Rutland’s Mayor, Ron Narum; Andrew G. Hoflen, cattle ranch and grain farm; Bert Siemieniewski, Rutland Post Office; Jim & Ione Lunneborg, community service volunteers; Dave & Pat Bladow, antique & classic cars; Bill Anderson, Sargent County Commissioner; Lori McLaen’s Bunkhouse; Joe’s Ag Supply & Joe’s Fertilizer, Kenny & Tanya Hamilton & family; Rutland Senior Citizens; Kathy Brakke, The Bagley House; Greg Donaldson, Rutland Oil Company; Jake Erickson, Jake’s Feed & Seed; Rodney Erickson, Wheaton-Dumont Co-op Rutland Station, Wild Rice Air Ag & R2 Inc; Paul Anderson, U-Stor-It of Rutland; Oleo Acres LLC; Mike, Scott, Jeremy, Alexis, Sue & Janice at The Lariat Bar; Calvin Jacobson, Jacobson Plumbing, Heating & Excavating; Waloch Johnson Insurance, Kristine Radke, Agent; David Bergeman, Farmers Union Insurance; Sargent County Bank-Rutland Station, Shawn Klein, Manager; Bernard Mahrer Construction, Inc., Shirley Mahrer, Mitch & Dawn Mahrer & Family; Rutland Cayuga Volunteer Firefighters, Andrew Woytassek & Kurt Breker, Fire Chiefs; and, Dale McLaen, McLaen’s Service. Santa Claus Day events concluded with Santa, his task performed, returning to his North Pole Christmas Headquarters, via the Eden SD home of his special friends, Mr. & Mrs. LaRon Knebel, to load up the sleigh for Christmas Eve and make a final check of the “naughty and nice” list. Before his departure, Santa Claus promised to return to Rutland next December for Rutland’s 74th Annual Santa Claus Day, and reminded all that they should never be naughty, and should be nice all year long. “And we heard him exclaim, AS he drove out of sight, HAPPY CHRISTMAS TO ALL, AND TO ALL, A GOOD NIGHT!”
Rutland native Ron Susag of Las Vegas NV and Park City MT has been visiting in Rutland at the home of his brother, Joel Susag, this week. Ron has been using his camera to chronicle progress on The Old Parsonage renovation and remodeling project at 217 First Street, and has then been forwarding the photos to Christina, Joel and Becky Reif, the daughters and son of the late Jack & Martha Reif who had served this community as Pastor of the local Baptist Church and as a teacher and Principal at Rutland High School during the 1950’s & 60’s. The Reif children are planning to be in Rutland for the All Class School Reunion here on July 5 & 6, 2019.
Encouraged and assisted by the mild and sunny weather of the past week, John Buskohl and the 2-man crew of Buskohl Construction: Dylan Odegard; and, Spencer Schutt; have been making rapid progress on the addition to The Old Parsonage at 217 First Street. Mr. Buskohl states that he expects to have the roof trusses up by Wednesday afternoon, and the exterior sheeting Completed by Thursday, December 20. Josh Nelson of Nelson Electrical Solutions (NES) of Rutland reports that he expects to begin electrical work on the project on Wednesday, December 19.
The Christmas schedule for the TNT ministry, that’s Trinity Lutheran of Havana, Nordland Lutheran of Rutland and Trinity Lutheran of Forman, is as follows: Sunday morning worship service at 9:00 a.m. on Sunday, December 23, at Nordland in Rutland, and Sunday worship service at 10:30 a.m. at Trinity in Forman; Christmas Eve service at 4:30 p.m. on Monday, December 24, at Trinity in Forman; and, Christmas Eve service at 7:00 p.m. on Monday, December 24, at Trinity in Havana. Janet Kiefer reports that Sunday worship will be at 8:30 a.m. on Sunday, December 23, and Christmas Day service will be at 10:30 a.m. on Tuesday, December 25, at Saints Peter & Paul Catholic Church in Cayuga.
Meanwhile, on the national scene: T’was the week before Christmas, and in America’s White House, everyone was under indictment, including the President, the White House mouse. Along with Flynn, the Weasel, and Cohen, the Rat, they are all being stalked by Mueller, the Cat. With memories of “Lock her up!” bouncing around in their heads, they’ll soon be all snug in their little prison beds. As of Friday, December 21, there are 99 weeks down and 109 weeks to go until January 20, 2021, when the people will have spoken and the national nightmare may end. Until then, hang on and try to enjoy the sleigh ride.
Well, that’s the news from Rutland for this week. For additional information about what’s going on in the little city that can, check out the community’s internet web site at http://www.rutlandnd.com, and stop by the Rutland Facebook page while you’re at it, too. Remember to patronize your local Post Office during the Christmas season, and don’t forget to keep the pressure on the U. S. Postal Service and the North Dakota Congressional delegation to SAVE OUR POST OFFICE! May the Spirit of Christmas be yours today and throughout the coming year, and best wishes to you and yours for a Happy & Healthy New Year!